This month we are asked to approve a Public Hospital District for Orcas Island, and, to elect five commissioners to be responsible to the tax-payers for its implementation and governance. A PHD is new to the Orcas community, so it is going to demand many hours and level-headedness to set up and create the policies and procedures for its operation. Additionally, the commissioners will have authority, by statute, to levy up to $1.6 million dollars in taxes starting in 2019. This dollar amount could fluctuate annually as the assessed values could also change.
Art Lange has stepped up to be one of these commissioners. I am well pleased that he is willing to offer his expertise in negotiations and organization to help this endeavor and is willing to study the issues concerning medical delivery and cost to arrive at solutions helping our community. There is no one-size-fits-all scenario, nor will these commissioners satisfy every condition and challenge presented to them, but I know that Art will work collaboratively with the others to find a balance between the medical needs and the costs associated with these needs.
No matter where you stand on the PHD election, vis-à-vis pro or con, it is critical that we elect commissioners who are level-headed, smart and able to sift through the massive amount of information that will be in front of them in the next few years. Art Lange will be that commissioner and is my choice.
So please join me in voting for Arthur Lange as hospital commissioner no. 3, in this month’s election.
Tony P. Ghazel